This blog is built on WordPress and hosted with JustHost. I’ve been happy with both since moving my blog here from Blogger in September 2009; it was relatively easy to combine the several blogs I had there into this one. The Blogger to WordPress plugin is helpful here for sending people from the original blogspot URLs to the corresponding posts here. The main complaint I have with JustHost is that the ToS forbids hosting video; it’s fairly easy to configure WordPress for HTML5 video, but even hosting small videos can prompt JustHost to permanently block parts of your site.
For a long while, the blog theme was a tweaked version of Bito 1.0.1 by Tommy Wang and the background was snokeh, a shot I took out my apartment window in December 2008. That seems to have had a security whole and it got compromised with spam links in the footer, so in late 2012 I switched to the WordPress-maintained twenty twelve theme. Now the background is dandelion storm.
Widget plugins in the sidebar currently include: Dingshow for displaying an Identi.ca feed (buggy, but better than nothing); and the excellent Get Recent Comments. I’ve tested out a number of other widgets, but the well-designed widget that does just what I want it to is rare. For displaying Flickr photos in the sidebar, none of the widgets can beat the standard Flickr badge, which I’m using now. For linking to my profiles on other sites, I use About Me.
The best general Flickr gallery plugin I’ve found is Flickr Gallery, which is in use on the photography page. The lightbox I use for displaying images from galleries is jQuery Lightbox For Native Galleries.
Yet Another Related Posts Plugin, which generates the “possibly related posts” at the end of each blog entry, is quite good. Subscribe to Comments, which lets commenters opt-in to email notification about replies, seems nice and simple.
Behind the scenes, I’ve found these plugins useful: Google XML Sitemaps, Google Analytics for WordPress (for in-depth traffic analysis), WordPress.com Stats (for simple, integrated traffic monitoring), StatPress Reloaded (for fully self-hosted stats), Robots Meta, Redirection, and Login LockDown. Akismet does a great job screening out spam comments. PJW Mime Config is handy for uploading arbitrary file types, like videos or zip files.